Beyonce announced her highly anticipated seventh studio album titled Renaissance via the Columbia Records Instagram account on June 15. Ahead of its release on July 29, reports have surfaced claiming that the ‘BREAK MY SOUL’ singer implemented a vetting process for all artists contributing to the new project.
Bey is likely running these checks in response to the news that a producer she collaborated with faced accusations of rape and assault. Grammy award-winning record producer Detail, whose legal name is Noel Fisher, is credited for co-writing Beyonce and Jay-Z’s 2013 hit ‘Drunk in Love.’ In August 2020, news broke of Detail’s arrest on 15 counts of sexual assault and 5 counts of felony assault. Fisher is currently being held on a hefty bail of $6.3 million.
It appears Beyonce is not willing to risk collaborating with any more artists that could be disgraced in the future. Her reaction is a natural result of the moral framework propagated by #MeToo: guilt by association, and guilty until proven innocent.
A source for The Sun claimed that Bey had already rejected two artists from the Renaissance lineup based on unproven allegations of misconduct: “Although neither has been found guilty, she’s sending a clear message to the industry in the wake of troubling cases from people like R Kelly and Harvey Weinstein.”
The insider continued: “Beyonce is a leader in her business and wants to set an example that any abuse shouldn’t be normalised. This is why her new record is about empowering women.”
It’s rich to hear that Beyonce, a shrewd businesswoman deeply entrenched in the industry, is lionized as a feminist icon looking out for the common woman.
Beyonce got her start in entertainment as a child star under the management of her father. Now 40 years old with countless awards under her belt, she has reached a legendary status in music.
It’s an open secret that the music industry is saturated with power-drunk creeps, Kesha’s alleged abuser Dr. Luke, and ‘king of R&B’-turned-convicted sex offender R Kelly being only a couple of highly publicized examples. Beyonce undoubtedly associates with many powerful players who are unlikely to ever be publicly outed in the familiar #MeToo fashion.
Detail’s history of alleged abuse occurred between 2010 and 2018, and only came to light in 2020. It is entirely impossible to know whether an artist is currently at large abusing their power behind the scenes. It is equally impossible to definitively place blame on artists with whom they collaborate prior to purported victims taking concrete legal action.
That is how one can easily deduce that Beyonce’s decision (or in actuality, her public relations team’s decision) was made for strategic reasons: it merely aimed to project the facade of an ethical stand against abuse in the music industry.
If you’re hoping that someone at Beyonce’s level will counter the music industry’s hidden culture of abuse in an authentic way, don’t hold your breath.